Iraqi Christians Prepare for First Easter Since Liberation From ISIS

For the first time since the Islamic State terrorist group drove thousands of Christians from Iraq’s Nineveh Plains, the village of Qaraqosh is preparing to celebrate Easter as believers slowly return to their hometown.

Open Doors, a Christian ministry that operates in over 60 countries worldwide, shares the story of Anis Behnam, a 58-year-old university teacher who was among those forced to flee the predominantly Christian town four years ago.

The Christian man told Open Doors that Sunday will be the first time since moving back that he will again celebrate Easter in Qaraqosh — once the biggest Christian town in Iraq — symbolizing hope and rebirth.

“Easter is a message to humanity, a message of new life,” he said. “After torture, after hardships, after tough conditions, there will be life again. This is the main thing that we expect from Easter.”

“Our Lord has risen. This gives all of us great hope, and we try to be just like Him: living a new life with Jesus Christ,” he continued. “I cannot think of myself living elsewhere. I tried to do that, and I failed. So this the only place where I would like to be — just to stay here forever, to be useful in my community.”

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Source: Christian Post